Then Tip's fears were proven to be well founded; for with the first streaks of gray dawn they looked over the sides of the sofas and discovered rolling plains dotted with queer villages, where the houses, instead of being dome- shaped -- as they all are in the Land of Oz -- had slanting roofs that rose to a peak
211 in the center. Odd looking animals were also moving about upon the open plains, and the country was unfamiliar to both the Tin Woodman and the Scarecrow, who had formerly visited Glinda the Good's domain and knew it well.
"We are lost!" said the Scarecrow, dolefully. "The Gump must have carried us entirely out of the Land of Oz and over the sandy deserts and into the terrible outside world that Dorothy told us about."
"We must get back," exclaimed the Tin Woodman, earnestly. "we must get back as soon as possible!"
"Turn around!" cried Tip to the Gump. "turn as quickly as you can!"
"If I do I shall upset," answered the Gump. "I'm not at all used to flying, and the best plan would be for me to alight in some place, and then I can turn around and take a fresh start."
Just then, however, there seemed to be no stopping-place that would answer their purpose. They flew over a village so big that the Woggle-Bug declared it was a city. and then they came to a range of high mountains with many deep gorges and steep cliffs showing plainly.
"Now is our chance to stop," said the boy, finding
212 they were very close to the mountain tops. Then he turned to the Gump and commanded: "Stop at the first level place you see!"
"Very well," answered the Gump, and settled down upon a table of rock that stood between two cliffs.
But not being experienced in such matters, the Gump did not judge his speed correctly; and instead of coming to a stop upon the flat rock he missed it by half the width of his body, breaking off both his right wings against the sharp edge of the rock and then tumbling over and over down the cliff.
Our friends held on to the sofas as long as they could, but when the Gump caught on a proJecting rock the Thing stopped suddenly -- bottom side up -- and all were immediately dumped out.
By good fortune they fell only a few feet; for underneath them was a monster nest, built by a colony of Jackdaws in a hollow ledge of rock; so none of them -- not even the Pumpkinhead -- was injured by the fall. For Jack found his precious head resting on the soft breast of the Scarecrow, which made an excellent cushion; and Tip fell on a mass of leaves and papers, which saved him from injury. The Woggle-Bug had bumped his round head against
213 Full page line-art drawing.
ALL WERE IMMEDIATELY DUMPED OUT.
214 the Saw-Horse, but without causing him more than a moment's inconvenience.
The Tin Woodman was at first much alarmed; but finding he had escaped without even a scratch upon his beautiful nickle-plate he at once regained his accustomed cheerfulness and turned to address his comrades.
"Our Journey had ended rather suddenly," said he; "and we cannot justly blame our friend the Gump for our accident, because he did the best he could under the circumstances. But how we are ever to escape from this nest I must leave to someone with better brains than I possess."
Here he gazed at the Scarecrow; who crawled to the edge of the nest and looked over. Below them was a sheer precipice several hundred feet in depth. Above them was a smooth cliff unbroken save by the point of rock where the wrecked body of the Gump still hung suspended from the end of one of the sofas. There really seemed to be no means of escape, and as they realized their helpless plight the little band of adventurers gave way to their bewilderment.
"This is a worse prison than the palace," sadly remarked the Woggle-Bug.
"I wish we had stayed there," moaned Jack.
215 "I'm afraid the mountain air isn't good for pumpkins."
"It won't be when the Jackdaws come back," growled the Saw-Horse, which lay waving its legs in a vain endeavor to get upon its feet again.